Honestly, life has been spiralling out of control for sometime now

When you first notice things are not right

My life has been disrupted, slowly but surely I have slipped between the cracks and I am losing my grip…

I am a thinker, that is to say, I spend a lot of time thinking about things in my waking hours and sleeping dreams. For sometime now, probably at least a year things have slowly but persistently slipped out of kilter. At first you brush the negative thoughts off, it’s just a bad day, sure things will get better, they always do, don’t they?

Time is Out of Joint

I couldn’t explain to myself what was wrong, let alone anyone else. But this expression ‘time is out of joint’ summed it up perfectly for me. It was as if my life had slipped almost imperceptibly into some weird place that felt profoundly wrong.

It was as if my life had slipped almost imperceptibly into some weird place that felt profoundly wrong.

I found myself spending more and more time thinking about the past, where I used to live, people I used to know, things I used to do. A lot of these things were in the past for a good reason, I didn’t want them in my life now, yet the passing of them felt like a loss. This was really messing with my head.

Dealing with loss

I think a lot of my unease had to do with losing things. In 2020, I lost my freedom to come and go as I pleased, see friends, family, travel, visit the arts, all the things that make-up daily life. I lost my Mum to Cancer and Dementia, lost a breast myself to Cancer, lost my bearings as I moved to a new house in a new place where I knew no-one. I lost my grip on reality!

Embracing the new

Please don’t feel sorry for me, alongside the loss there has been a wealth of good things and new beginnings. A brand new house by the sea which I have long dreamt of having. A new studio amongst other creative artists. A new breast! not quite the same as the old one, but I am learning to love her. New places to visit and explore, new people to meet and get to know.

painting of girl in green jumper by Chrissie Richards
A Moment of Calm

Coping mechanisms

I am a great believer in helping myself. I have been practicing meditation since the beginning of the year using the Headspace App and it has been so helpful to take time out each day to just sit and watch my thoughts and get more comfortable with doing nothing for a time. I also listen to Abraham Hicks on YouTube, I can’t explain this to you, and if you listen you may for a while think it is crazy, but for me and millions of other people it totally works. Listening to Esther Hicks takes me out of myself and to a better place.

The real catalyst for change

At the beginning of May I felt I couldn’t cope alone anymore and I spoke to my husband about things whilst we were walking along the promenade here in Brightlingsea. I explained that even though I was really pleased we had moved and I loved the new house things were not good. I told him that this feeling of being out of sync, out of tune, perpetually a little bit uneasy was getting me down. And you know what, he totally understood, he said he felt the same way, it was understandable, but it would be ok. I was so relieved that, it was really good to share the burden. After this conversation, things began to shift for me and I felt more grounded.

I don’t know why it took me so long to speak to him, I think because I didn’t want to admit that life wasn’t perfect because it felt ungrateful when I had so much to be thankful for. That conversation really shifted things for me, I hope you have someone you can talk to, it really does help.

A lot of rubbish stuff has happened in the last couple of years and it takes a while for it to be absorbed. I believe that all experiences good and bad become part of your rich tapestry of life, to become part of your make-up, to make you a stronger person.

Painting of girl holding fish by Chrissie Richards
The one that Got Away

Art imitating life

Now I look back on the paintings I created earlier this year, I can see how I was processing my thoughts on the canvas. The figures are thoughtful, contemplative, alone, questioning their surroundings and reality. They are real, but unreal at the same time, described as ‘other worldly’ by a recent visitor to my studio.

painting of girl and fish by Chrissie Richards
Fish out of Water

Disrupted Realism

The Sun Shone Yellow

During May I have been painting as much as I can, this has really helped me. When I spend time being creative it feeds my soul, it is uplifting even when I don’t like what I create, I have spent time doing what is important to me, that is all I need to do.

My figures are becoming more disrupted, the lines are blurring between the foreground and the background. The shapes and colours that make up the background become part of the figure, just as our experiences and surroundings become part of us. In and out, over and under, layer by layer we build our lives, I create my paintings.

New studies added to my shop

mixed media study on paper disrupted realism painting
Don’t Go

I have added a few of these new disrupted paintings to my shop, they are small mixed media pieces on paper and very affordable at only £30 each, why not check them out now?

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